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Schedule a PSA test today

A 54-year-old client wants to spread the word about the importance of men age 40 and older getting a yearly PSA test to check for prostate abnormalities. His yearly PSA test revealed some hot spots that turned out to be malignant. Since cancer claimed the lives of both his mother and uncle, my client did not hestitate to have his prostate removed. Additional checkups will reveal whether radiation will be required as follow-up therapy. Right now, my client is feeling good that the cancer was caught early.

So, men, don’t delay. Schedule a PSA test today.

Technique of the month

My massage has evolved so that I like to do specific muscle work first before the long gliding feel-good strokes. For instance, when the client is face up and I’m working on a lower leg, I concentrate first on strong finger strokes aimed at the tibealis anterior and posterior and the peroneals before similarly deeper work aimed at the quadriceps and adductors and the strumming of the iliotibial band and tensor fascia latae.

After all this specific work, I reoil my hands and smooth out the leg with some softer palm strokes from foot to hip and back down again, eight or 10 or 12 round trips to leave the leg and the client more relaxed than when I started.

Stretch of the month

In 1992, doing eye exercises promoted by Dr. Joseph Shapiro (www.centerforunlimitedvision.com) in Manhattan, I was able to discard my eyeglasses for nearsightedness and weak computer reading glasses.

Fifteen years later, with a long commute eating up free time and with more time fixating my eyes on a computer screen, I sense that my eyes are strained, locked in forward vision, weak in peripheral vision and just plain tired.

To strengthen and loosen my eyes, I’ve turned to the Natural Vision Improvement Kit. I’ll let its promotional material describe it.

“You have the power to improve your eyesight — naturally. Building on techniques pioneered by opthalmologist William Bates, Meir Schneider created an effective approach for self-healing and used it to reverse his own blindness. With The Natural Vision Improvement Kit, Schneider teaches his innovation methods for exercising your eyes back to health. Use these proven techniques to see your world with less strain, greater acuity, and a more spacious visual field. Learn more about the principles of natural eyesight improvement; dozens of exercises to increase your visual acuity and ocular health; Tibetan yoga practices to refresh your eyes and mind; on-the-spot techniques to ease reading, driving, and computer eyestrain; how eyesight influences your overall well-being; and more. The Natural Vision Improvement Kit offers everything you need for vision improvement that you can do at home, including:

A series of daily exercises on CD to help correct near- and farsightedness, cataracts and eye fatigue, including yogic techniques to increase your sense of eye movement and balance the muscles around our eyes

  • Especially for computer users who suffer from eyestrain, an additional audio CD offers relaxation and restorative exercises you can do at your desk
  • 13 portable, photo-illustrated cards offering instruction on fundamental eye exercises that you can do anytime, anywhere
  • 2 standard eye charts to test your vision and monitor your improvement
  • An illustrated study guide to take you step-by-step to better vision, and much more.”

The price is $26.95. It can be ordered from the School for Self-Healing in San Francisco at at 415-665-9574. More information is at www.self-healing.org.

CranioSacrally speaking

Most cases of scoliosis are considered to be of unknown origin. CranioSacral Thearapy helps unravel the cause within the craniosacral and fascial systems of the body. Compromising strain patterns of those systems can be major contributors to the creation and persistence of scoliosis.

CranioSacral Therapy gently addresses compromised tissue patterns surrounding and within the spinal column, adipose tissue and the dural tube through techniques such as mobilization of fascia, gentle traction and enhancing the mobility of the body tissue in response to the motion of the craniosacral system. The practitioner uses the tissue response to this movement to assess areas of compromise and localize core restrictive patterns. Tissue response to the craniosacral rhythm also is used during therapy as a tool for dynamic change by assisting the body in moving more fully and freely, in synchrony with the vital rhythmic current of the craniosacral system.

Structural interconnections, interactions and dysfunction within the body can be baffling at times. CranioSacral Therapy embraces the interrelationships that can occur and uses the craniosacral and fascial systems as precise and powerful tools in identifying and facilitating the correction of compromising tissue patterns. In this way, scoliosis and many other conditions relating to the spinal column can be assessed and addressed.

(From “Scoliosis and CranioSacral Therapy” by Ted Wanveer, in the February 2007 issue of Massage Today, www.massagetoday.com)

Learning from the largest study on cancer and massage

A study often cited to support massage therapy programs for cancer patients was performed by the Memorial Slaon-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City. Written by Barrie Cassileth and Andrew VIckers, it’s titled “Massage Therapy for Symptom Control: Outcome Study at a Major Cancer Center.” The researchers found immediate, dramatic reductions in the big five major cancer symptoms — pain, nausea, fatigue, anxiety and depression.

(From Massage Today, February 2007, www.masagetoday.com. More info is on the author’s Web site, www.tracywalton.com)

Drinking fruit juice reduces Alzheimer’s risk

Drinking at least three glasses of fruit juice weekly reduces the chances of developing Alzheimer’s disease by 75 percent. According to a new study reported by the UK Alzheimer’s Research Trust, 2,000 people were followed for 10 years, keeping track of what they ate and drank. Although those who drink more fruit juice could also engage in other healthy lifestyle behaviors, the researchers believe the positive effect of fruit juice comes from the antioxidants they contain.

(From Venture Inward, January/February 2007)

Foundation to promote spirituality in health care

The Global Medicine Education Foundation (globalmeded.org) has been created to provide educational programs for healthcare providers. The program fosters evolving holistic clinical, personal and global perspectives in the healing arts, creating a foundation for being more effective and compassional healthcare providers. In response to the growing needs of healthcare providers, medical students and physicians to lead healthy, whole lives, GMEF provides educational environments that balance intellectual quest, experiential learning and personal transformation.

For more information, contact GMEF at 75 Woodside Trail, Chapel Hill, NC 27517; 919-967-2630; info@globalmeded.org.

(From Venture Inward, January/February 2007)

Recipe of the month

Rhonda Malkmus’ Basil Pesto

(From the Feb. 13 Hallelujah Acres newsletter (www.hacres.com)

2 cups basil leaves (rinsed and patted dry with a towel)
1/4 cup pine nuts (soaked one hour and drained)
2 small or 1 large garlic (peeled & minced)
1/4 cup Vegetarian (rice) Parmesan Cheese (optional, but adds a lot of flavor)
1/4 teaspoon Celtic Sea Salt
Small pinch cayenne pepper
1/4 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Place above ingredients, except olive oil in food processor with the “S” blade and blend till creamy. Then drizzle olive oil into chute while running. Scrape sides and blend again until oil is fully mixed with other ingredients. It is now ready to be mixed into cooked pasta or spread over pizza crust.

Until next time … stay in healthful touch.

Dennis Sprick
The Heartful Touch
Massage and CranioSacral Therapy

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